Rob Mitton

Tower Hamlets

6Good deeds

6runs

7cheers

Rob Mitton went on a group run
Group run
Tower Hamlets

Rake it or leaf it

Mon 10 Jan
Report written by Laura Williams

No fewer than 13 runners gathered on the Town Hall Hotel steps last night to warm up for this evening’s activity.

We were headed to Cranbrook Community Food Garden, just behind bustling Roman Road, to play gardening catch-up with Janet and Eileen, who spend a huge amount of their time running events and caring for the facilities at this much loved, useful community location.

We warmed up with some dynamic stretches and a few lower body exercises, before stretching out tight pecs and shoulders, a much-needed bit of flexibility work after a day at the desk.

We slowly grew in number as the warm-up continued, and a good-sized group made its way down Old Ford Road, combining chatter and running, well navigated by Simon, ensuring we took in the least busy streets.

On arrival at the Centre, Janet was well prepared for two tasks: one team headed inside for an industrial clean of the well-used trestle tables, and some other table preparation for the next event.

Meanwhile, a larger team (we’d grown further on arrival at Cranbrook) tackled the mounds of leaves in and around the garden, bagging bin liner after bin liner to be taken to the Estate’s many large bins.

The endless squatting, reaching and lifting meant that a workout was had by all, but the catching-up that took place meant the effort was barely felt. After one final, victorious bin-trip, Eileen put the kettle on and tea and squash was enjoyed by the team.

We said our farewells, posing for a final pic, and went our various ways, including a brisk run back to the Hotel for some, to grab belongings before heading home, not forgetting a huge shout-out to our Heather, who tonight hit her 50th good deed :)

What a cracking start to the year.

Next week, we’re invited to Rocky Park, where more willing, productive GoodGym hands are required to help get the garden ready for the Spring…You can sign-up here.

Until then.

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Rob Mitton signed up to a group run
Group run
Tower Hamlets

MONDAY NIGHT GROUP RUN: Gardening and cleaning furniture at Cranbrook Community Food Garden

Mon 10 Jan 18:30 pm
Town Hall Hotel - Hotel Entrance, Patriot Square, London, E2 9NF
Back to one of East London's best loved community gardens...

Longstanding task owner Janet has invited us to the Community Garden for our first Group Run of 2022!

What we will be doing

Activities tonight will include weeding, clearing leaves and other gardening tasks. We will also be needed to clean tressle tables, that need a bit of TLC!

What you need to know

  • You can either meet directly at the task, or beforehand for our Group Run.

  • For the Group Run, will meet at our usual location of the Town Hall Hotel, where there will be facilities for you to change and leave bags securely.

  • We'll then enjoy a short warm-up in Patriot Square between 6:30 and 6:45 before making our way down to the Community Centre for 7pm (address for Cranbrook Community Centre is Mace St, Globe Town, London E2 0RB).

  • Please bring a head torch and gloves if you have them.

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Rob Mitton has completed 5 good deeds with GoodGym. Mon 1 Nov 2021

Rob is a now a pretty committed GoodGym runner. They've just run to do good for the fifth time

Rob Mitton went on a group run
Group run
Tower Hamlets

Bonjour, tout le pond!

Mon 1 Nov
Report written by Laura Williams

Holding Out for a Hero

An 80s playlist and chocolate biscuits: what's not to like.

Yes, we started this week's Group Run listening to Bonnie Tyler's Holding Out for a Hero and eating Penguin biscuits.

Spirits remained high as the team motored through 30 minutes of mini-band work, leaving no fitness stone un-turned. We enjoyed endless hip abductions (those 'exercises your phyio nags you about'); rotator cuff work (ditto); crab walks (good for blitzing whole lower body) and then the team were most resilient and accepting (or maybe just resigned) in taking to the tarmac to do the lying-and-seated, band abs master class. Ouch. We completed the session with some stretches before heading over to the pond to meet remaining runners who'd decided 50 minutes of shovelling and wheeling was enough of a workout for a Monday evening.

Sand, mud and near misses

This was our last visit to the pond for the time being, an area that has been recreated and been built back bigger and better, thanks in part to the care and leadership of our task owner Michael.

Today's brief was another tough one: two teams; two piles of dense sand and mud. In each team, 3 were on shovelling and filling barrows; three on wheeling and emptying into the pond. Ouch, ouch, ouch (in a good way). If burning forearms, hamstring-loading and a good lat pullover substitute are your thing, do keep your eyes peeled for future pond tasks in January...

Lots of sand and soil was shifted; lots added to the pond (a few near misses, in my case, as I overlooked the role physics plays when it comes to dense loads and steep edges...).

Team. Did. Good.

What it all means

We heard how our work has helped speed up the creation of this task, making this new, important facility available to residents and locals even sooner; helps provide a habitat for newts and other wildlife and helps improve many aspects of human health along the way.

It was gone 8 when Team Mud were prised away from the last barrow. We gathered to hear Michael talk us through the pond's next phase of its journey, and eagerly awaited a rough idea of when we might return.

It's been an amazing few weeks at this task. Well done everyone - although there's no denying this is a fun, sociable and productive way to spend an evening, showing up on dark, damp nights for heavy lifting over treacherous terrain is also no mean feat.

(And, let's be honest, nor is pun writing, so a massive well done to our Joel for this evening's absolute beauty).

Until next time.

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Rob Mitton signed up to a group run
Group run
Tower Hamlets

GROUP RUN: Return to the pond + resistance band workout

Mon 1 Nov 18:30 pm
Bethnal Green Nature Reserve, Middleton Street, London, E2 9RR
Back to the toughest task in town for one final push.

It's our final push at the pond tonight!

What we'll be doing

  • We'll be meeting at Middleton Green Basketball Court at 6:30pm for a pre-pond workout before we start the seventh installment of our big pond task. This week, we'll be returning to the mini-bands, to work on glute strength, core and upper body. Playlist, by popular request, will be 80s Power Ballads, and there will be chocolate.

  • If you'd like to meet at the task, we'll be meeting Michael at the Nature Reserve in Middleton St from 7pm.

  • Tonight we will be filling the outer edge of the pond with sand and soil + building up the bank of the pond + distributing woodchip acorss the woodland paths!

  • Please bring a headtorch if you have one.

  • We have allowed 60 minutes for this evening's task, but we may finish earlier.

  • There will be somewhere to leave bags both at the workout and at the task itself if you're coming straight from work.

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Rob Mitton went on a group run
Group run
Tower Hamlets

Sand Heft Auto

Mon 18 Oct
Report written by Laura Williams

✅ Rain: check

✅ Wind: check

✅ Mud: check

But that didn't deter 13 GoodGymers from showing up at Bethnal Green Nature Reserve to undertake the sixth visit to what I think is probably the toughest task since I started.

So what's the story?

The Nature Reserve has been able to upgrade the pond of this important area, as part of the Mayor's Greening Fund project portfolio.

It's allowed the team to fund paid internships, and boost this area of biodiversity, which also serves as a dedicated local space whose objectives include improving both physical and mental health of all residents.

Where do we come in?

However, it's a big project, and emptying one large space, only to refill another large space with sand and mud takes, well, a lot of work. A lot of dark, damp evenings shovelling, wheeling and lifting heavy stuff.

But there they were, out in full force last night. Take two large sand mounds, umpteen wheelbarrows -ditto shovels and coffee sacks - and turns out you have the ultimate total body workout. (And, let's not forget to mention the members who showed up for the Middleton Green workout beforehand - way to go).

Don't Stop Me Now

The team didn't stop: from the moment they picked up the first shovel, to the last wheelbarrow being returned, it was one huge hive of activity. Mainly working in pairs, the GoodGymers shovelled sand into coffee sacks, wheeled them to the edge of the pond, before carefully tipping them out of the barrows and dragging them to join the lining line-up. Toughgoing, with treacherous terrain to boot, a huge amount was achieved.

"Look at that," said Michael as we approached the end of the evening. "Seriously, that is a really enormous help."

Quite.

Well done, everyone. That was a Monday night truly well spent. You rock.

Until next time

That just leaves me to thank Liz for this week's spectacular pun, and to shamelessly promote the second session at the pond this week: a 60-minute full body workout on Wednesday, once again, as a small team help Michael start lowering the sacks into the pond.

Until next time.

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Rob Mitton signed up to a group run
Group run
Tower Hamlets

GROUP RUN: Rebuilding the Pond at Bethnal Green Nature Reserve

Mon 18 Oct 18:30 pm
Bethnal Green Nature Reserve, Middleton Street, London, E2 9RR
On this evening's Group Run, we're shifting sand and lining sacks...

Come and join this tough task, complete with two workouts, to really kickstart your week.

What we'll be doing

  • We'll be meeting at Middleton Green at 6:30pm for a pre-pond workout before we start the sixth installment of our big pond task.

  • If you'd like to meet at the task, we'll be meeting Michael at the Nature Reserve in Middleton St from 6:45pm.

  • We have allowed 75 minutes for this evening's task, but we may finish earlier.

  • There will be a short, post-pond stretch workout back on Middleton Green after the task!

  • There will be somewhere to leave bags if you're coming straight from work.

Why so early?

  • Daylight! (this is a big new project, and we need to maximise the daylight left during the evening, so if you are able to sneak out of work a bit early...).
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Rob Mitton went on a group run
Group run
Tower Hamlets

No diggity, I got to bag it up, bag it up

Mon 11 Oct
Report written by Laura Williams

Hola, upper body extravaganza

The evening started with a speedy little workout on Middleton Green, just as the sun was setting. We whizzed through some laps of 'the little hill'; mobility and agility drills and the obligatory balance work.

We then made our way over to Bethnal Green's Nature Reserve where no fewer than 17 of us came together to help Michael and the team start filling hessian sacks with which to line the new pond.

It was an hour of heavy lifting. Anyone ever tried packing a large bag full of damp, tightly packed soil and moving it? Hola upper body extravaganza.

But the team did good: working in pairs and small groups, bags were neatly filled, expertly lifted and dragged and the job done, as per.

"How long have we got?"

"How long have we got? Shall we move some soil around to the billboard area?" asked Task Owner Michael at 7:40.

Yes, let's. It's not as if we need our lats for anything else for the rest of the week.

It was a brilliant evening of productivity. Fantastically managed, from start to finish, with bundles of equipment and lights; fab leadership from both the task team and our team (Simon, you are the best steward in town) and the usual huge commitment to Getting. The. Job. Done.

We came together for our cheerios, and planning our next sessions (this Weds at 6:30pm; next Monday's Group Run at 6:45pm).

Post-pond stretching

Then we dispersed into two groups: those who were headed straight home for dinner and feet-up and those who took a mini detour via Middleton Green again for some post-pond stretches.

A wicked night, everyone. Fantastic to see so many come out on a dark night to lend a hand that makes such a difference (this is a huge project, a big undertaking for the Nature Reserve and a lot of work that might not get done, or at least might take a whole lot longer without you).

Aaand the shout-outs...

Shout-out to Jess for this evening's spectacular pun.

And not forgetting the biggest shout out to our Charlotte who tonight reached her 50th good deed. Here's to the next 50, and thanks for all you bring to the party, Charlotte.

Until next time.

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Rob Mitton signed up to a group run
Group run
Tower Hamlets

GROUP RUN: Rebuilding the Pond at Bethnal Green Nature Reserve

Mon 11 Oct 18:30 pm
Bethnal Green Nature Reserve, Middleton Street, London, E2 9RR
On this evening's Group Run, we'll be tackling the next stage of this big pond redevelopment...

What we'll be doing

  • We'll be meeting at Middleton Green at 6:30pm for a pre-pond workout before we start the fourth installment of our big pond task.

  • If you'd like to meet at the task, we'll be meeting Michael at the Nature Reserve in Middleton St from 6:45pm.

  • We have allowed 75 minutes for this evening's task, but we may finish earlier.

  • There will be somewhere to leave bags if you're coming straight from work.

Why so early?

  • Daylight! (this is a big new project, and we need to maximise the daylight left during the evening, so if you are able to sneak out of work a bit early...).
Read more
Rob Mitton went on a group run
Group run
Tower Hamlets

Full Nettle Jacket

Mon 4 Oct
Report written by Laura Williams

Slowly but surely we arrived one by one to this evening's meeting point by Mile End Park's wonderfully-located Art Pavilion.

Each were greeted individually by our brilliant Task Owner John, who equipped everyone with a fork, and some truly sturdy gloves.

Why were we here?

Well, the countdown is on to clear some dense nettles and brambles in time for half term activity. And so Friends of Mile End Park called on us to help out on this tough, time-sensitive task.

Fork of the town

And so to work we went, our small group growing less small by the minute. We uprooted, we chopped, we stacked, we carried. It was quite the workout, not least for Rohan's fork, who gave up the ghost during the first half of the task. What can we say? John did say the nettles were tough. Impressive stuff.

With good ground lights saving the day, we proceeded to make large piles of our treacherous, discarded plants, which looked quite the stinger stash as we called it a night.

We gathered for tool deposits and our last pics of the day.

"So, you can do your keep fit up there," gestured John to the floodlit area of the pavilion as we finished up. "I'll come and see if it's any good."

And so up the hill we climbed, to the well-lit area above the pavilion for some spectacular views as we tackled mini (slippery) hills, Bulgarian split squats, hip mobility, and some fab static stretching with an official barre. Hur-RAH.

What can I say?

Another night to remember. "They blitzed a fair amount," John reflected as we walked back down the hill after.

I should say.

Until next time.

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